Advanced Manufacturing

Manufacturing in the Centralina Region

The Centralina Economic Development Commission has identified the adoption of advanced manufacturing technologies as a priority for our regional economic development. The nine-county region currently has over 2,700 manufacturing firms, the largest concentration of manufacturing in the state. However, the manufacturing industry is under pressure from imports and lower costs in competing countries. Successfully sustaining and growing this important industry in our region will require the integration of new technologies into manufacturing processes and the creation of an environment in which advanced manufacturing can flourish.

We are presently focusing on the Automotive Supply Chain as one industry in Centralina region that will benefit from our Advanced Manufacturing initiative. For more information, please visit our Automotive Supply Chain page.

Advanced Manufacturing Initiative
With a planning grant from the Economic Development Administration and investments from equity partners, the CEDC has released a feasibility analysis for the development of Advanced Manufacturing Facilities in the Centralina region. In a progressive inter-state collaboration, three counties in South Carolina (Chester, Lancaster and York) and the Catawba Council of Governments have joined in this effort.


The feasibility study catalogues current manufacturing in the region, identifying opportunities in emerging technologies and advanced manufacturing, and establishing a strategy to implement these recommendations.

You can see these feasibility reports here:

Activities of this initiative include:

  • Developing a regional website, to promote the efficacy and growth of the advanced manufacturing companies, collaboration among companies in the cluster, educational programs, and to encourage discussion of innovative products.


  • Branding strategy and marketing for advanced manufacturing centers and companies in the region. The website is expected to grow and become a vehicle for small businesses to connect both with experts, programs, and other businesses in their supply chain.
  • Creating and printing of a brochure featuring the advanced manufacturing centers in the region. The brochure will be used by the Charlotte Regional Partnership, local chambers, community colleges, and economic developers in the area to highlight the manufacturing cluster.
  • Researching the extent of the cluster and mapping the supply chain for the automotive, motorsports, and transportation industry in the greater Charlotte region and to potentially enlarge the region. The goal is to spot areas where missing industries might be recruited to the region and to let existing manufacturers buy locally produced materials.

Initiative Goals:

  • Creating and sustaining advanced manufacturing resources that will serve targeted small and medium sized manufacturing enterprises in the Centralina region, providing expertise and support to innovative enterprises in a targeted sector.
  • Encouraging the continued growth and prosperity of manufacturing firms in the region and employ innovative technologies and advanced manufacturing processes to compete in a global market.
  • Developing highly specialized niches in the regional manufacturing sector.


To learn about Advanced Manufacturing resources in our region please view our Advance Manufacturing in the Greater Charlotte Bi-State Region brochure.


Developing a Skilled Workforce in Advanced Manufacturing

Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC), a multi-campus facility serving Mecklenburg County, opened a new facility in Charlotte using integrated systems technology (IST) to train displaced workers for new jobs that require setting up, operating, and maintaining a variety of high-tech manufacturing systems. The program includes both instructor-led classes and hands-on training in electronics, hydraulics and pneumatics, piping systems, electrical sensors and basic mechanical devices.

Also through this initiative, CPCC will offer an apprenticeship program and advanced manufacturing courses toward an Associate of Applied Science degree (AAS).

The CPCC training program is part of the National Center for Integrated Systems Technology (NCIST).

For more information on Workforce Development in the greater Charlotte region, visit the members of the Competitive Workforce Alliance:

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